Lessons sometimes come when I am not really ready...like when I am driving. Lessons I teach and am taught.
1) Tonight Kath told me that she doesn't get the ball during scooter
ball as much as everyone else. She said her scooter was too slow. Then
she said her pants were too long. For a second I seriously considered
letting her think those were the reasons. Then I thought about how today
my students and I talked about student athletes who are admitted into
colleges when they can't even read above
a 4th grade reading level, how we really aren't doing them any favors,
but setting them up for failures. So I had to say, "Kath, it's not that
your scooter is slow or your pants are too long. Your body works so hard
to just do what it does do that riding a scooter on top of all that is
that much harder. You may never be fast at riding a scooter but you are
good at other things." She answered, "Like what?" I asked her what she
thought she was good at. She hardly paused before she started to list,
"Hopscotch, skipping, dancing...and on and on." I told her she was also
one of the best huggers I knew (she made sure she hugged my writing
group to near asphyxiation tonight after that) and that she is always
concerned about her friends. And then it was ok. Even though I had that
sour taste in my stomach that comes when I have to make something
understandable to her that I think is so unfair.
2) She talked
about how she read in a book that the stars are always out, out in
space, they don't go to sleep when the sun is up and that some people
don't know that.
3) After my writing group meeting I asked her
if she had a good time joining me and she said, "Yes, but I didn't get
to do my writing." (we spent the whole meeting talking)
our way home Kath pointed to the stars and told me that stars are really
angels of the people in heaven looking down on us, watching over
us...she saw it in a movie (It's A Wonderful Life.) She knows my mom is
in heaven and our sitter's mom died last week, so this is something she
is trying make sense of.
So I made her face the deal about
'slow' scooters, but she seems to know and believe in space and
angels...and that seems okay. As long as she knows science is real I
have no problem with angels and the comfort they bring. I believe in
them too. I seem surrounded some days by them esp when I am struggling
to get through a day of making sense where none can be found. Strokes
suck, but their survivors are pretty awesome.